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April 12, 2010

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Visitor numbers to be limited in safety move

SHANGHAI World Expo organizers are putting a 600,000-a-day limit on visitors for safety reasons, local officials said over the weekend.

The measure, announced less than a month before the Expo starts, indicates the pressures the city may face during the event that could see one of the largest visitor turnouts in history.

Zhou Huai, head of the Expo traffic management department, said that traffic outside and inside the site will be "safe, convenient and in order."

Visitor numbers inside the Expo site will be subject to a three-level alert system, Zhou said.

Authorities will beef up supervision if the volume reaches 400,000. They will limit visitors after more than 500,000 visitors are on site.

As soon as the volume reaches 600,000, the organizer will call off transport services to the site, which means the closure of 42 special bus routes for the Expo as well as Metro stations near the site.

Outside the Expo site, the city has reserved policies to cut the use of private and official cars on certain days according to their license plate numbers to ease possible traffic snarls, according to a traffic organization plan released in January.

It's estimated that 70 million visitors will come to the 184-day Expo, with a daily turnout of about 400,000. Up to 90 percent of the daily visitors are expected to reach the Expo site on public transport.

Metro Line 13, five bus routes and five ferry tours are the main body of public transport inside the Expo site.

Most of that will be free except for two tour bus routes and three sightseeing ferry routes which take visitors out of the site at night.


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